rj40 wrote:Mumbles, how might becoming a "Program of Record" play into this? I assume any result from this past year would have to be very good indeed. Then what?
A Program of Record has a funding line that extends through the 6-year Fiscal Year Defense Plan (FYDP). A plus-up is usually only 1 year money, almost always intended to go to a specific company or organization, usually in a or several particular politicians' constituencies. (And they get really upset when you use the money they added to the budget, for the very reason they added it, but award the contract to a different company!)
It is the steady nature of a firm funding profile over several years that makes a program of record better to work with. Not to say plus-ups don't help in a pinch, and are good at jump-starting new efforts. But when the next year rolls around, and there is no funding line (even if it gets added again that following year), it is hard to keep a long-term project going...